On Wednesday the 1st of March, eleven Education and Early Years degree students from UCW travelled up to London for a few days of sight-seeing, educational visits and a West End production of Matilda.
Susie, Early Years Curriculum Coordinator, gave us the low down:
Staying at the ‘Wombat’s Hostel’ on Dock Street gave us a perfect location for getting out to explore London and many of the exciting things it has to offer. The weather was most definitely on our side, and although it was cold, we had clear blue skies and sunshine for much of the time!
One of the highlights of the trip was our visit to ‘Pearson Street Adventure Playground’ in Hoxton, which is part of the offer by ‘Hackney Play Association’ whose goal is to improve young people’s health, well-being and quality of life through play. We are very grateful to the director, Kay O’Brien, who gave us a guided tour of the playground and facilities available and led an inspiring play work training session for us demonstrating how to build inclusive and positive relationships with children and families, and the value of play. The students loved having a go on the play equipment themselves, and enjoyed the opportunity to interact with the children and parents accessing the playground and seeing how this place is utilised and loved by the local community.
The students were given some free time to explore London and they took up the opportunity to visit museums, get some shopping in and one group took an open-top bus tour to fit in almost every famous landmark in the city!
On Thursday evening we went to the Cambridge Theatre to watch Matilda, which was absolutely fantastic. All of us were blown away by the talent and energy of the young stars of the show, and we really enjoyed cheering them on and singing along. It was a great opportunity to absorb the atmosphere of the West End, not to mention the Lego and M&M shop!
We attended the ‘Childcare and Education EXPO’ at Olympia on the Friday which offered our students the chance to engage in a broad range of experiences, such as workshops, presentations and seminars with well-known inspirational speakers. Alongside these events there were numerous promotional stands that are designed to equip visitors with an array of fresh and exciting ideas to take back to their education settings – our students were very happy with the goodies they managed to collect or buy to enhance their nurseries and schools!
It was a real honour to take our students on this trip to widen their experiences, expose them to some great learning opportunities and see them form friendships across the year groups. Kim, a BA Early Years student, sums up our trip to London so well – “it’s been absolutely fantastic! Lovely to spend time with some very awesome people, doing awesome things…what an experience.”
To find out more about our Education and Early Years programme, click here.